Most helpful critical review
687 of 695 people found the following review helpful
Quick and easy to use, but kills your back!
on July 8, 2009
Over the course of three children we have had FIVE carriers: Two slings, a Baby Bjorn, a Snugli and the Ergo Baby.
The Bjorn is definitely the best looking and easiest to use. The clips and connectors are very intuitive and it's easy to get smaller infants into it. In the first 3 months, this was my favorite carrier.
The "Air" version is basically the "Original" with much more breathable fabric. Unfortunately this doesn't address the biggest shortcoming of the carrier.
My big complaint is that when the kids get larger (or if you wear it for more than ~10 minutes at a time) it really starts to kill your back. This is because the design keeps all the weight on your shoulders. It's like wearing a backpack BACKWARDS!
The "Active" version has wider straps and a which provide additional support for a small improvement over the "Original," but it still puts all the weight on your shoulders, pulling them forward. The additional strap is a "lumbar" strap and still too high to put the weight on your hips.
If you backpack, you know what I'm talking about. A lightweight daypack is fine for lugging 10 lbs of textbooks from class to class, but if you want to be able to hike for an hour with 25+ lbs you have to shift the weight to your hips.
If you only plan to use this when grocery shopping and think you'll give it up when they're 6 months old, this might be for you. If you think you might want to go to the park and hang out, or use it even when the kid starts to crawl, then the Ergo Baby is probably more your speed. My wife can take our 25 lb one year old for 20 minute walks around the neighborhood in the Ergo. We keep it in the car to use as a stroller substitute just in case.
p.s. this is coming from a guy who is 6', 180# and fit. My wife is smaller and far more critical of the ergonomics of this carrier.
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